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The SIJ Transactions on Industrial, Financial & Business Management (IFBM), Vol. 1, No.

1, March-April 2013

Knowledge Management in an Indian


Perspective
Vibha Thakur* & Swarnangini Sinha**
*Assistant Professor, Department of Computer Science, Career College, Baraktullah University, Bhopal, Madhyapradesh, INDIA.
E-Mail: vibhathakur.242@gmail.com
**Assistant Professor, Department of Computer Science, Career College, Baraktullah University, Bhopal, Madhyapradesh, INDIA.
E-Mail: swarnangini@gmail.com

Abstract—Knowledge management is a systematic process for creating, acquiring, synthesizing, learning,


sharing and using knowledge and experience to achieve organizational goals. A proper flow of information is
essential for the growth of every organization. Knowledge management is a necessity that can make all the
difference between survival and an early demise. Today majority of business organizations have knowledge
management program in one or another form. Indian business organizations are also feeling need of new
business paradigms. Many organizations in India have started knowledge management initiatives. This paper
“Knowledge Management in an Indian Perspective” emphasizes on Knowledge Management practices in
business organizations at Bhopal. This paper studies the role of knowledge management in Indian business
organization. The paper is a part of studies of knowledge management technologies and their implementations
in various business organizations and some problems that hindered knowledge management practices at
Bhopal. The objective of this paper is to identify the extent to which organizations are aware of knowledge
management. The focus is on understanding how the knowledge management initiators foresee the
implementation process and deriving its benefits. The paper investigates the scope of effective implementation
of a knowledge management strategy in the workplace of business organizations and provides future
directions.

Keywords—Business Organizations, Information, Knowledge, Knowledge Management, Technologies

Abbreviations—Knowledge Management (KM)

probabilities of success. Managing knowledge is that the


I. INTRODUCTION prime strategic agenda all told corporations. Corporations

O
across all sectors acknowledge the essential role knowledge
VER the past decades, the world has been
management can play in their future success. Globalisation,
experiencing vital changes. The key to alter is
easing and technological development have conjointly
awareness, sharing ideas and arising with new and
modified business atmosphere in Asian nation. Indian
innovative ways that of staying previous the competition.
business organizations also are feeling want of recent
There’s an excellent want nowadays to accumulate, utilize
business paradigms in information economy. Knowledge
and share knowledge. Nowadays economies have evolved
management could be a necessity that may make all the
into knowledge economies and are characterised by the actual
distinction between survivals associated an early death
fact that knowledge becomes the main issue of production
[Barclay et al., 1997]. With the rise in info technology usage,
within the value-adding economic activities [Jon Surmacz &
several organizations in Asian nation have started knowledge
Megan Santosus]. Within the knowledge economy,
management initiatives.
information and data effectively overshadow physical assets
because the primary units of production, distribution and 1.1. Aim
consumption. The key to growth within the rising atmosphere
The objective of this paper is to spot the extent to that
is in innovation that is associate outcome of development of
organizations square measure alert to data management.
data. Organizations are discovering that they have to try and
Additionally, the main target is on understanding however the
do a much better job of capturing, distributing, sharing,
data management initiators foresee the implementation
preserving, securing, and valuing their precious knowledge so
method and derivation of advantages from this task. There
as to remain previous their competitors [Tsai et al., 2006]. By
square measure organizations taking part during this survey
managing its knowledge assets, associate enterprise will
that have or square measure reaching to implement a
improve its aggressiveness, ability and increase its
knowledge management strategy. The paper investigates the

ISSN: 2321 – 242X © 2013 | Published by The Standard International Journals (The SIJ) 7
The SIJ Transactions on Industrial, Financial & Business Management (IFBM), Vol. 1, No. 1, March-April 2013

scope of active implementation of a knowledge management It is appreciation that information and knowledge are
strategy within the work of business organizations. corporate assets, and those businesses essential strategies,
plans, and tools to cope up those assets. Certain efforts focus
1.2. Research Methods on augmenting creativeness - creating innovative knowledge
The main objective is to identify the combined knowledge of value - while additional programs highlight leveraging
the organizations’ and the actions taken to successfully existing knowledge [Tarun Jain & Bipul Pandey, 2012].
implement Knowledge Management within the organization.
2.3. Need of Knowledge Management
The following are certain precise business aspects that
II. KNOWLEDGE MANAGEMENT produce the requirement for knowledge management in
Knowledge management is an orderly process for generating, business organizations.
obtaining, producing, learning, allocating and using  Diminutions in staffing generating a requirement to
knowledge and understanding to achieve organizational replace informal knowledge with formal approaches.
goals. An appropriate flow of information is indispensable for  The extent of time available to experience and obtain
the development of every organization. Knowledge knowledge has moderated.
management will be playing a vital role, and those  Primary retirements and growing flexibility of the
organizations that use it early will have an edge [Charity work force lead to damage of knowledge.
Ezigbo, 2013]. Knowledge management is not just a  There is a requirement to manage growing difficulty
technology or tool. It is more about finest practices and as small operating companies are trans-national
actions rather than pure technology. Therefore, it requires sourcing operations.
support from knowledge workers and actual use can happen  Products and facilities are progressively complex,
only when all of them are energetically involved. endowing them with a important information
component.
2.1. Defining Knowledge
 Markets are gradually competitive and the speed of
There are two types of knowledge explicit knowledge and innovation is increasing.
tacit knowledge. Explicit knowledge can be expressed in  Competitive compressions decrease the size of the
linguistic terms and communicated among different persons, work force that grasps valuable business knowledge.
and tacit knowledge as special knowledge engrained in  Maximum of our work is information based.
personal experience and concerning personal acceptance,  Organizations strive on the basis of knowledge.
views, and standards [Brelade & Harman, 2000].  Variations in strategic direction may consequence in
In conventional observations of the role of knowledge in the loss of knowledge in a precise area.
business organizations, tacit knowledge is sometimes
 The requirement for life-long wisdom is an
observed as the actual key to getting things completed and
inescapable reality.
producing fresh value. Not explicit knowledge. However
The knowledge and information have become the
observing how knowledge is assimilated and how we can
medium in which business glitches occur. Thus, managing
relate knowledge whether tacit or explicit to attain a
knowledge signifies the primary opportunity for achieving
affirmative outcome that fulfills business necessities that’s a
substantial savings, noteworthy improvements in human
changed and very significant issue [Ailar Rahimli, 2012].
performance, and competitive benefit [Vakharia & Bharat,
2.2. Knowledge Management 2000].
The knowledge management is a commercial activity with 2
prime facets: III. APPROACHES OF KNOWLEDGE
 Considering the knowledge factors of commercial MANAGEMENT IN INDIAN BUSINESS
activities as an explicit concern of business imitated in ORGANIZATION
plan, program, and exercise at all stages of the
3.1. Prospective Role of Knowledge Management in Indian
organization.
Business Organization
 Creating a straight connection between an
organization’s knowledgeable assets - both explicit After the 1997 decline in India and other Asian countries
and tacit and progressive business outcomes. caused a downturn in turnover in mainstream of the
Knowledge management often includes classifying and companies, the biggest menace was the ability to decrease the
plotting knowledgeable assets within the organization, time to market and develop a modest gain. Cost decrease and
producing new knowledge for reasonable benefit within the better-quality production were also considered serious issues
organization, constructing huge amounts of corporate for organizations during the subsequent five years.
information available, partaking of greatest practices, and Knowledge burst, cumulative globalization, the fast
technology that accelerates business activities including development and dispersal of information and
groupware and intranets [Carol Hildebrand, 1999]. communication, and their communicating effects on race call
for a paradigm alteration in development strategies. Effective

ISSN: 2321 – 242X © 2013 | Published by The Standard International Journals (The SIJ) 8
The SIJ Transactions on Industrial, Financial & Business Management (IFBM), Vol. 1, No. 1, March-April 2013

knowledge management program can provide a new the concept visualize knowledge management activities to
analytical perspective [Bender & Fish, 2000]. spread across the organization.
To apply a Knowledge Management program imagine
knowledge management to lead them to innovative ways of 3.3. Experience to Date of Knowledge Management
doing business, augmented market shares and generate 3.3.1. Roadblocks to Adoption of Knowledge Management
enormous future prospects for businesses. A Knowledge Solutions
Management program leads to revenue development, There have been many roadblocks to adoption of formal
cultivating competitive benefit and employee progress knowledge management activities. In general, managing
[Mohammad Lashkary et al., 2012]. knowledge has been perceived as an unmanageable kind of
The impending benefits on a long-term basis would be in problem - an implicitly human, individual activity - that was
context of increasing “revenue progress” and further intractable with traditional management methods and
improving competitive benefit. Another potential long-term technology [Sethumadhavan, 2007].
profit identified was “employee progress” and “product The integration of knowledge into everyday use in a
improvement”, which are very serious parameters in normal working place and lack of use uptake due to
calculating the accomplishment of a knowledge management insufficient communication was the major threats. In
implementation. Key short-term paybacks expected by addition, threats such as, the user being unable to perceive
respondents would be “dropping prices”, “cultivating personal benefits, and lack of participation from the senior
marketing policies”, “expanding customer focus” and management towards developing a sound knowledge
“enabling profit development [Parag Sanghani, 2009].” management strategy [Selvarag, 2003]. These remained the
3.2. Current state of Knowledge Management prime areas of concern.
The fundamental flaw was viewing knowledge
3.2.1. Knowledge Management Strategy in Place management as a technology issue. It is not the technology
In India Overall, 75% of business organizations had or were that is holding organization’s back but a failure to build
seeing a knowledge management policy in place, 19% had knowledge management into the organization’s day-to-day
not any program in place but were conscious about operations and its culture [Arora, 2002]. The potential causes
knowledge management and the rest 6% did not have a for failure in successfully implementing a knowledge
knowledge management program as well as were not management program are summarized as follows:
conscious about knowledge management and its profits to  Lack of user uptake due to insufficient
business. communication.
 Integration of knowledge management activities into
3.2.2. Status of Organizations’ Knowledge Management
everyday working processes.
Programs
 Users unable to identify personal benefits.
Different business organizations implemented Knowledge  Senior management not fully focused in implementing
Management program at different extent. Around 12.5% a knowledge management program.
organization had Knowledge Management as an integral part  Lack of Training for promoting knowledge
of their business process and the value of organizational management activities.
knowledge is reported to their stakeholders. 31.5%  Technical Issues towards implementation.
organizations have integrated the knowledge management
 The difficulty of capturing tacit knowledge.
strategy with some technical or cultural issues. 37.5%
 The difficulty of capturing tacit knowledge.
organizations are utilizing knowledge management
 Lack of knowledge sharing.
procedures to achieve known benefits and 50% organizations
have initiated knowledge in a non-uniform manner with pilot 3.3.2. Major Issues in the Next Five Years
approaches in place. 50% organizations have no knowledge
In view of the 1997 recession, which caused a downturn in
management strategy in place for achieving overall
turnover in majority of the companies, the biggest threat
organizational goals. However, the implementation falls short
identified was the ability to reduce the time to market and
of a full Knowledge Management program.
develop a competitive advantage. Followed by cost reduction
3.2.3. Knowledge Management Driver and improved productivity. Quality of the product was one of
the major issues but was not identified as an immediate threat
Every business organization implements a knowledge
to business sustainability [Ailar Rahimli, 2012].
management strategy at different level. These levels are
Though knowledge management is the next important
company level, division level, department level and at all
business strategy; it is not a priority as Alliance/networking
levels. Overall, 50% business organization implement
amongst the people within the organization is less critical for
Knowledge Management strategy at organization-wide and a
organizations during the coming five years.
further 37.5% business organization identify the departmental
level to be the most suitable. This indicates that the drivers of

ISSN: 2321 – 242X © 2013 | Published by The Standard International Journals (The SIJ) 9
The SIJ Transactions on Industrial, Financial & Business Management (IFBM), Vol. 1, No. 1, March-April 2013

3.4. Knowledge Management and Role of Technology 4. If yes, then at which level you have implemented
3.4.1. Use of Technology to Implement Knowledge Knowledge Management in your organization?
Management 5. If no, then are you interested to implement Knowledge
Management strategy in your organization?
Technology, in itself does not constitute a knowledge
management program; rather it facilitates one, especially in Do you know about Knowledge Management?
large, geographically dispersed organizations. The 88% of the
business organizations had implemented Internet access, 75% 5%
10%

of the organizations had an intranet and 63% of the


organizations used a document management system. Around Yes
No
50% of the organizations had a decision support system in Don't Know

place and 44% of the organizations used data warehousing


and mining techniques. The maximum organizations who 85%

have implemented knowledge management strategy in place


are currently at a preliminary level. This is because the use of Figure 1 – Do you know about Knowledge Management?
Artificial Intelligence based techniques for making pertinent
knowledge available in a most accurate manner was not on Are you aware of the benefits of Knowledge Management?
the planning agenda. This is due to a fact that techniques like
artificial intelligence are used at the system implementation
stage. In context to technology, many business organizations 23%

were looking at implementing Internet and Intranet to Yes


No
develop a strong external and internal flow. In context to the 12%
65%
Don't Know

current scenario, developing a strong internal information


backbone is of primary interest [BML Consulting, 2002].
This resulted in, “document management systems” being the
Figure 2 – Are you Aware of the Benefits of KM?
third most effective technology in managing information.
Is your organization implementing any strtegy of Knowledge
Management?
IV. SOME KNOWLEDGE MANAGEMENT
80%
INITIATIVES AT BHOPAL 70%
60%
50%
Much theory has been written about knowledge management 40% Series1

but there has been limited discussion about its practical 30%
20%
benefits and how to implement it and deliver business 10%

benefits. There are two key issues for any knowledge


0%
Yes No Don't Know

management strategy:
Figure 3 – Is your Organization Implementing any Strategy of KM?
1. Management of explicit information and processes.
2. Management of people and the environment in which If yes, then at which level you have implemented Knowledge
they work so that tacit knowledge is exchanged more Management in your organization?

naturally and systematically.


One of the primary reasons why many knowledge
At all levels

management initiatives fail is because too much emphasis has Departmental level
Series1
been placed on explicit knowledge and IT solutions. To Division level

extract insights from in-depth discussions on issues related to Company level


implementation of knowledge management in business
organization. 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60%

Our focus was based on some small and medium Figure 4 – The Level of Implementation of KM?
enterprise in Bhopal region that comprises of Mandideep and
Govindpura industrial area. We had covered diversified If no, then are you interested to implement Knowledge
Managementin your organization?
industries like foundry, casting, fabrication, machining and
processing industry. 21%

The Survey was based on key management initiatives


with emphasis on knowledge management such as. Yes

1. Do you know about Knowledge Management?


No
12%
Don't Know

2. Are you aware of the benefits of Knowledge 67%

Management?
3. Is your organization implementing any strategy of
Knowledge Management? Figure 5 – Future Plans for Implementation of KM?

ISSN: 2321 – 242X © 2013 | Published by The Standard International Journals (The SIJ) 10
The SIJ Transactions on Industrial, Financial & Business Management (IFBM), Vol. 1, No. 1, March-April 2013

4.1. Observation and Discussion 4.3. Limitations


On the basis of survey the key findings which can be Knowledge management can really help in providing
highlighted are as follows: systematic approach to the knowledge loss of the particular
 Management should look upon the key areas where company. According to the survey there are some hindrances
there is huge data loss for the company. for not implementation of knowledge-management.
 To Compete on Price.  Not directly proportional to return on investment with
 Tacit knowledge need to be tapped for large extent. respect to business organization.
 The 85% Organizations have information about  Enormous network requirement to be set up for
knowledge management other 15% organizations are implementing knowledge management.
not acquainted with knowledge management.  Employee assertiveness towards fundamental
 However, 65% Organizations are aware of the benefits modification in the ongoing system is also a difficult
of knowledge management but other 35% to be dealt with.
organizations are not fully aware of its benefits.
 Overall, 76% organizations have implemented V. CONCLUSION
Knowledge Management strategy but other 24%
organizations have not yet implemented any Knowledge management initiatives are expanding across all
Knowledge Management strategy. types of organizations and companies worldwide. The
 There are only 15% organizations who have objective of this paper is to identify the extent to which
implemented Knowledge Management strategy at all organizations are aware about knowledge management and
levels. learning of current Knowledge Management practices in
 Those organizations who have not implemented Indian organizations. To implement a knowledge
Knowledge Management strategy yet, only 67% of management program can be visualized as a new way of
them are interested to implement Knowledge doing business, increased market shares and generate
Management strategy in their place. enormous future prospects for businesses. A Knowledge
Management program leads to revenue growth, improving
4.2. Future Directions competitive advantage and employee development. As far as
Knowledge management as a conception is very attractive India is concerned knowledge Management is still
and offers vast business opportunities that should not be preliminary stage. It has to cover a lot of ground to come up
missed. It is an engine that converts knowledge into business the level of knowledge management implementation. In India
value. However, implementation of knowledge management there is a need of national knowledge management concept to
is not easy for small and medium enterprise. Organizations create and harness the knowledge of our own people and start
have to grabble various issues and challenges such as creating and using our own software packages.
organizational culture, policy, information technology,
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ISSN: 2321 – 242X © 2013 | Published by The Standard International Journals (The SIJ) 11
The SIJ Transactions on Industrial, Financial & Business Management (IFBM), Vol. 1, No. 1, March-April 2013

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